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hand holding baguette slice dipped in Maryland crab dip.

Crab Dip (Best Maryland Style)

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 4.8 from 55 reviews
  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: serves 8
  • Category: Appetizers
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American


For the best texture, use lump crab meat and each ingredient listed. No substitutions! Serve with crusty baguette, sturdy crackers, celery sticks, or pita wedges. For more success tips and to learn which crab meat to use, see blog post above.


  • 8 ounces (226g) full-fat brick cream cheese, softened to room temperature
  • 1/4 cup (60g) mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup (120g) sour cream
  • 1 and 1/4 cups (155g) shredded cheddar cheese, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground mustard
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 and 3/4 teaspoons Old Bay seasoning*
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 pound fresh lump crab meat*
  • optional: 2 dashes of hot sauce (or to taste)


  1. Preheat oven to 375°F (191°C).
  2. In a large mixing bowl using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese on medium-high speed until smooth and creamy, about 1 minute.
  3. Add the mayonnaise, sour cream, 1 cup cheddar cheese, ground mustard, lemon juice, Old Bay seasoning, Worcestershire sauce, and hot sauce (if using). Beat on medium-high speed until combined. Using a spoon or silicone spatula, gently fold in the lump crab meat. If you used hot sauce, taste, then add more hot sauce if desired.
  4. Transfer to a 9-inch (or slightly larger) baking pan, pie dish, or oven-safe skillet. Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup of cheddar cheese.
  5. Bake for 25 minutes or until hot and bubbly around the edges.
  6. Serve warm.
  7. Cover and store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Reheat in the microwave or in a 350°F (177°C) oven until warmed throughout.


  1. Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: You can fully assemble this crab dip, cover tightly, and refrigerate for up to 2 days before baking/slow cooking and serving. You can also freeze the unbaked or baked (and cooled) crab dip for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator, then bake as directed; or, if already baked, thaw and heat in a 350°F (177°C) oven for 25 minutes or until warmed throughout.
  2. Special Tools (affiliate links): Glass Mixing Bowl | Electric Mixer (Handheld or Stand) | Wooden Spoon or Silicone Spatula | Oven-Safe Skillet
  3. Cream Cheese: Make sure you’re using a brick of cream cheese, not cream cheese spread. I’ve used lower-fat ingredients with no problem like reduced-fat (not fat-free) cream cheese, sour cream, and mayo, but the dip obviously tastes richer with the full-fat versions.
  4. Old Bay: Use 2 teaspoons for a spicier kick. (I usually do!)
  5. Which Crab Meat to Use: For any questions regarding which crab meat to use, see Best Crab Meat for Crab Dip in the blog post above. I highly recommend fresh (refrigerated) lump crab meat.
  6. Slow Cooker: Follow steps 2 and 3. Instead of transferring to a baking dish, spoon into your slow cooker (do not add the 1/4 cup of cheese on top) and cook on low for 3–4 hours until hot and creamy. Stir occasionally as it cooks. During the last 30 minutes, sprinkle 1/4 cup reserved cheddar cheese on top.